Well, we wish things had been cleared up a bit by now. But of course we don’t run things at the SCOTUS. Or anywhere else, for that matter. Or even our own life, it often seems.
Anyway, as our regular readers (all three of them!) are no doubt aware, we have been following a few cases in the SCOTUS that might, or might not, have something to do with an important issue the SCOTUS should address, and has been trying to address, and has been unable to address for a couple of decades, primarily because in that time it turns out that none of the SCOTUS Justices, and none of the attorneys arguing before them are actual lawyers who may at one time or another have tried a case to a jury.
As of this morning, it looks like…….not.
Why do we say this?
First, right now it appears there is no interest in this case, even though Hogan Lovells brought the petition. That could still change. The Respondent engaged in a little bob and weave by asking for an extension to file a response and then waiving the right to do so, kind of at the last minute. Whereupon as you can see, if you check the link, the case gets “distributed” for the May 15th conference at which it supposedly will be considered. And if that’s what happens here with nothing else in between it’s almost certainly a denial.
As an aside, look at what Hogan Lovells did before on this issue. Oh, yeah. Not good.
Second, SCOTUS interest has certainly been shown in this case, but it seems to have something to do with the first question presented by the petition, which is not the really important one. We like the second question. There may be interest in that, too, but it’s less likely. We say that because SCOTUS is also showing interest in this case.
The common element between the two is a police shooting and the potential constitutional liability of the officer for damages. The SCOTUS proclivity for taking up cases and limiting opportunities for that is habitual and entrenched. SCOTUS protects institutional litigants from being held to account by the rabble. They see this as their primary function.
Judged by that standard, they do a very, very good job.